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The Black Catholic Monthly | African Americans | Catholic News Black Catholic Congress: "We hold ourselves accountable to our baptismal 
    commitment to witness and proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ"
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Our Mission

We, The National Black Catholic Congress, comprised of member organizations, represent African American Roman Catholics, working in collaboration with National Roman Catholic organizations. We commit ourselves to establishing an agenda for the evangelization of African Americans; and to improve the spiritual, mental, and physical conditions of African Americans, thereby committing ourselves to the freedom and growth of African Americans as full participants in church and society. Aware of the challenges, we are committed to evangelize ourselves, our church and unchurched African Americans, thereby enriching the Church. We hold ourselves accountable to our baptismal commitment to witness and proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ."

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Acacia Tree :  National Black Catholic Congress Symbol

The Acacia Tree is a native to Africa, it is mentioned in the Bible in the Book of Exodus and in the Book of Isaiah. The wood of the tree was used to build the Ark of the Covenant. It is mentioned in Isaiah as a sign of the Messianic restoration in Israel. The Acacia Tree has deep roots, and survives through drought, dryness and famine. It is a strong tree which provides shelter for wild animals from the soaring heat of the sun and it also provides food and nourishment. Since biblical times, the Acacia Tree has been a symbol of stability and resilience. The tree is still found in many areas of Africa and has been a symbol of that land.

 

NBCC Founder Daniel Rudd

Daniel Rudd, founder of the National Black Catholic Congress (NBCC, was born August 7, 1854 to Robert and Elizabeth Rudd. Daniel was one of 12 children. His father was a slave on the Rudd estate near Bardstown, Kentucky and his mother was a slave of the Hayden family in Bardstown. Both parents were Catholic.

After the Civil War, Daniel Rudd moved to Springfield, Ohio (where his elder brother, Robert Rudd, was living), in order to get a secondary-school education. There in 1886 he began a Black newspaper which was called the "Ohio State Tribune." That same year, Rudd changed the focus of this weekly newspaper and gave it a new name, "American Catholic Tribune," the only Catholic Journal owned and published by Colored men. The newsletter is presently published by the NBCC as the African American Catholic Tribune newsletter.

In 1889, Daniel Rudd called together the very first National Black Catholic Congress. This meeting was held at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Washington, D.C. Distinguished men of African descent came from all over the United States to participate in this historic event. President Grover Cleveland invited them to the White House for a meeting. Fr. Augustus Tolton, the first recognized Black priest ordained for the United States of America, was present and celebrated High Mass.

Daniel Rudd orchestrated five Black Congresses in his time. One was held in 1894 at St. Peter Claver Church Hall, in Baltimore, Maryland, and an opening dinner was held at historic St. Francis Xavier Church on the east side of the city. Fr. Cyprian Davis, OSB, noted historian, states that Daniel Rudd is one of the most important figures of the nineteenth and twentieth century since he published the newspaper and promoted the Congresses.

 
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